Assessment of the Humoral and Cell-Mediated Immunity Against the Plasmodium Falciparum Vaccine Candidates Circumsporozoite Protein and SPf66 in Adults Living in Highly Endemic Malarious Areas of Papua New Guinea

H.-P. BeckPapua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research, Papua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research, Madang, Papua New Guinea

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I. FelgerPapua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research, Papua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research, Madang, Papua New Guinea

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S. KabintikPapua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research, Papua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research, Madang, Papua New Guinea

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L. TavulPapua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research, Papua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research, Madang, Papua New Guinea

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B. GentonPapua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research, Papua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research, Madang, Papua New Guinea

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N. AlexanderPapua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research, Papua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research, Madang, Papua New Guinea

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K. K. BhatiaPapua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research, Papua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research, Madang, Papua New Guinea

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F. Al-YamanPapua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research, Papua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research, Madang, Papua New Guinea

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J. HiiPapua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research, Papua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research, Madang, Papua New Guinea

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M. AlpersPapua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research, Papua New Guinea Institute of Medical Research, Madang, Papua New Guinea

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To assess natural immunity against the circumsporozoite (CS) protein and the synthetic vaccine SPf66, immunologic studies were carried out in a highly endemic malarious area of Papua New Guinea. Antibody prevalence, antibody titers, and T cell proliferation against both antigens were measured in 214 adults. Immunologic data were analyzed with respect to longitudinal malariologic and morbidity data. Evidence of genetic traits such as glucose-6-phosphate dehydrogenase deficiency and ovalocytosis was analyzed. Antibody prevalence was high, with 79% and 84% for CS protein and SPf66, respectively, while T cell proliferation was infrequent and low, with 14% and 12% responders, respectively. Anti-CS protein antibodies increased with age but showed no association to malaria indices or morbidity. No protective value was observed with T cell responses or with humoral response to SPf66. These results provide a first description of naturally developed immunity against SPf66 and suggest further studies in to fully understand the mechanism of immunity against this antigen.

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